THE BEST OF GOLF
2019 Premier Properties Guide SPECIAL ISSUE 2019 LINKSMAGAZINE.COM
The World’s Best Golf Communities
PRESORTED STANDARD U.S. POSTAGE PAID PEWAUKEE, WI PERMIT NO 1484
Where finding a fourth is never a problem. CO M E H O M E TO T H E C A RO L I N A M O U N TA I NS . Our legendary collection of seven mountain and lake private club communities, nestled between Asheville, Greenville and Lake Keowee, offers the very best of the Carolina mountains. From four distinct, welcoming seasons and year-round golf from Player, Nicklaus, Fazio and Wright to epic food and wine experiences and outdoor pursuits, members enjoy all of our renowned clubsâ€”all with a single membership.
Plan Your Discovery Visit Now Mountain and Lake Homes and Homesites
Obtain the Property Report required by federal law and read it before signing anything. No federal agency has judged the merits or value, if any, of this property. This is not an offer where registration is required prior to any other offer being made. Void where prohibited by law. In SC, Cliffs Realty Sales SC, LLC, 635 Garden Market Dr., Travelers Rest, SC 29690, Harry V. Roser, Broker-in-Charge and in NC, Walnut Cove Realty, 158 Walnut Valley Parkway, Arden, NC 28704, David T. Bailey, Broker-in-Charge.
FEATURES 20 BAY MAN
High-tech learning centers are all the rage at high-end clubs and communities across the country. Amazingly, one man is responsible for most of them. By Graylyn Loomis
24 WHO’S BUYING NOW?
There’s no such thing as typical anymore, whether you mean the buyer or what it is they’re looking for By Erik Matuszewski
30 LIVING THE LEARNING LIFE
The Cliffs provides endless opportunities and expert instruction, exposing mind and body to a world of new experiences By James A. Frank
38 IT’S NEVER TOO LATE
Tired of watching his game decline, this golfer of a certain age found there’s still lots of golf life in the old boy yet By David DeSmith
42 EASTERN UNITED STATES
From Alabama to Vermont, a rich variety of comforts, courses, and communities
94 WESTERN UNITED STATES From Arizona to Wyoming, the properties of the West are wild and wonderful
106 INTERNATIONAL PROPERTIES Look abroad for places to live that will enthrall, enchant, and entertain
DEPARTMENTS 12 INSIDE LINKS A New Reality
14 WHAT’S HOT
Current trends from top golf communities
Where to find the finest golf communities in the United States and internationally
116 10 TIPS FOR BUYING
IN A GOLF COMMUNITY
Before signing on the dotted line, make sure you know about the following
ON THE COVER: Canoeing at The Cliffs THIS PAGE: Creekside Farm at The Cliffs
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A NEW REALITY
t isn’t often that a cover of LINKS Magazine—or any of our other products, like this issue of Premier Properties Guide— features an activity other than golf. We publish golf magazines and cover the golf lifestyle better and more completely than anyone else. Golf is what we do and who we are. So what’s with the canoe? The cover photograph is emblematic of a new reality at top golf communities: They are about a lot more than just golf. I see it in my travels to the best properties throughout the country, where the addition and enhancement of other amenities is creating a much broader luxury lifestyle. This trend is certainly evident in this issue of PPG. It’s possible no community in the world has gone to greater lengths to expand its offerings than the seven Carolina properties that make up The Cliffs, the subject of our cover story. From wellness to food and wine, cycling and wakeboarding to farming and pickleball, The Cliffs has invested heavily in expanding its range of activities, indoors and out, benefitting body and mind. The same is true at the communities profiled in the article titled “Who’s Buying Now?” which explains that this ever-increasing emphasis on non-golf pursuits is meant to satisfy the wishes of new buyers. Make no mistake, the current crop of shoppers looking for a first, second, or retirement home in “golf communities” still wants to have a great golf course. But they want more, as well, and expect a rich menu of interesting and exciting ways to stay active, young, and engaged. But something else about the canoe. Notice who is carrying it. Four youngsters. Are they the children or grandchildren of residents? Doesn’t matter. Another revised fact of life in the current golf real estate market is the explosion of intergenerational families. Three, maybe four generations getting together on weekends, over the holidays, during the summer, anytime at all, and using the unique atmosphere of premier communities to have fun, bond, and make a lifetime of memories. Because that’s something else true of the new reality: It’s as old as time.
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The Best Of Golf
John R. Purcell
Nancy S. Purcell EDITOR James A. Frank ART DIRECTOR Tim Carr DIGITAL EDITOR Graylyn Loomis LISTINGS EDITOR Robert Dagley
David DeSmith, Elizabeth R. Elstien, Erik Matuszewski CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHER
Charles Ford LINKSMAGAZINE.COM DIGITAL MARKETING MANAGER DIGITAL MARKETING ASSOCIATE
Sunil Pillai Ian Critser
ADMINISTRATION CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER
Laurie Johnson Stephanie Alsop
OFFICE MANAGER/EXECUTIVE ASSISTANT
Kolin Rankin/ProCirc, LLC
ADVERTISING VP/ EASTERN ADVERTISING DIRECTOR
John Swain firstname.lastname@example.org • 203-304-1927 VP/ WESTERN AND MIDWEST ADVERTISING DIRECTOR
Cris Hayes email@example.com • 310-798-4320 DIRECTOR OF SOUTHEASTERN SALES
Cody Harrison firstname.lastname@example.org • 904-671-3570 PALM SPRINGS/LOS ANGELES/ARIZONA
Cathie Kanuit email@example.com • 310-804-0562
Reader letters may be sent to the address below in Hilton Head Island, S.C., or to firstname.lastname@example.org. Readers can visit LINKSMagazine.com featuring selected LINKS editorial content and spectacular photography, as well as surveys, sweepstakes, and articles from joint online partners. For reprint information contact: Stephanie Alsop, 843-842-6200 (phone), 843-842-6233 (fax), or email@example.com. Editorial and advertising offices, P.O. Box 7628, Hilton Head Island, SC 29938 Customer Service: 800-350-9301, firstname.lastname@example.org LINKS – The Best of Golf (ISSN 1043-6375) is published Quarterly; Winter, Spring, Summer, Fall and a Special Issue during Winter by Purcell Enterprises, Inc., 10 Executive Park Road, Suite 202, Hilton Head Island, SC 29928. Periodicals postage paid at Hilton Head Island, SC and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to LINKS, P.O. Box 15099, North Hollywood, CA 91615. PREMIER PROPERTIES GUIDE
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THE CLIFFS PROVIDES ENDLESS OPPORTUNITIES AND EXPERT INSTRUCTION, EXPOSING MIND AND BODY TO A WORLD OF NEW EXPERIENCES BY JAMES A. FRANK
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he first few casts were clumsy, lucky to hit the water and not Nick’s boat or worse Nick, my fishing guide. But after a few pointers and watching the expert do it right, both my accuracy and distance improved. And although I didn’t catch anything, the early-fall morning spent on a lake, enveloped in mist and mountains, was the most relaxed I’d been in months. Besides, catching wasn’t the point; giving it a try was. “Try it” easily could be the mantra of The Cliffs: seven communities encompassing 30,000 acres of luxury lifestyle, astounding scenery, and diverse experiences spread across 60 miles of western North Carolina and South Carolina. Justifiably famous for the concept of a single membership granting access to all seven clubs—and seven terrific golf courses—The Cliffs hasn’t been content to sit on its linkslife laurels. As the desires of buyers have changed, the clubs have responded, offering hundreds of social activities,
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organizations, and outdoor adventures, and enlisting a worldclass team of instructors—like angler Nick Rubio—to make the introductions. Mountain biking to mahjongg, shooting to spinning, hiking, horseback riding, and haute cuisine. You name it, The Cliffs has it at one or more of its clubs. Take, for example, wakeboarding. Never heard of it? Think of water skiing but instead of wearing two skis your feet are strapped onto a single board as you jump, flip, and otherwise go a little crazy through the boat’s wake. Abby Delgoffe, formerly world-ranked in this growing sport, teaches wakeboarding out of the Beach Club at The Cliffs at Keowee Springs, one of three Cliffs clubs on 26-mile-long Lake Keowee. She’s gotten many a member out on the water. “We’ve had little kids of three and four up to people into their 70s,” Delgoffe reports. “Our goal is to get them up and moving on the water in their first session and we have about a 99 percent success rate.” On land, Anna Claire Richardson, who runs the Outdoor Exploration Series, gets members walking, organizing PREMIER PROPERTIES GUIDE
GEORGE HINCAPIE Director of Cycling Cycling is not as demanding as many people think. At The Cliﬀs, where I run about 10 rides a year for members, I primarily want to show them how much fun it is and that it’s a non-impactful sport that’s great exercise, even extending people’s lives. Cycling doesn’t always have to be serious, hard-core racing; it can be a nice easy bike ride that gives a great workout at the same time. It’s for anyone. There are miles and miles of great rides near The Cliﬀs. Most people don’t realize how much world-class cycling is nearby, and that includes lots of easy routes perfect for new riders. They usually really get into it. When I’m laying out a route, I think about who will be doing the ride and plan to make it fun for a wide range of levels. Rides are usually 25–35 miles, and we generally make a ﬂat start so it’s as easy as possible. We keep the rides very social so they can stay together and talk about where we’re going and what the route has in store. After a few miles, we have regroup sessions to see how everyone is doing. About halfway through, the group splits with about half of them heading back. Then I take the others, most of whom have been riding longer, on a more challenging ride. Hincapie started in a record 17 Tours de France and was on ﬁve winning American teams between 1996 and 2012. He also raced in ﬁve Olympics and was the U.S. Road Race champion three times.
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Corporate Director of Beverage, Advanced Sommelier Our members love wine, beer, and liquor. With wine, people spend years trying to understand it and then settle into a favorite. A lot of members go with what they know and while we love to cater to that, we think it’s important to break them out of their norms, and the wine symposium series and dinners have been very enlightening. The Cliﬀs has made a real commitment to wine, allowing me to travel around the U.S. and the world, trying new wines, making connections so the doors open to allocations that we wouldn’t otherwise have. We oﬀer 25 to 30 wine dinners a year across the properties, as well as seminars, some with wine experts, sommeliers, and speciﬁc wineries and winemakers. Probably the biggest driver of culture at The Cliﬀs is our Wine and Food Festival, which is going into its ﬁfth year. Traditionally it’s the last week of September, with one or two events at each club so it gives members the opportunity to attend a dinner every night, although they can attend dinners at any club, not just the one they belong to. This year we hosted 15 events and every one was packed. We’ve started a chapter of Chaîne des Rôtisseurs within The Cliﬀs, in which we host elaborate dinners both during the festival and all year long, some of them in restaurants in the nearby cities, showcasing great food and wine. Right now we’re looking to up our coﬀee service because our members drink it every day and they want better, richer coﬀees. We’re planning to add high-end coﬀee/espresso makers that would be in the lobbies of the seven clubhouses each morning and then in the kitchens to provide great coﬀee at night. They’re going to love that.
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Creekside Farm offers fresh produce—and a chance to work the land.
more than 80 hikes a year on trails within the communities and in nearby Pisgah National Forest and the Blue Ridge Mountains. There are also chances to explore local attractions including Asheville, N.C., and Greenville, S.C., two exciting small cities minutes from the clubs and featuring shopping, culture, and thriving food scenes ranging from craft beers to gourmet restaurants. “We want to expand their horizons,” says Richardson, who keeps the activities calendar full all year long while running summer camps for kids and leading many wilderness walks—as well as paddleboard and kayak tours—herself. “On a paddleboard, in the forest, we work them hard. And the members keep coming back for more.” A different sort of work propels Creekside Farm, a small organic farm adjacent to Walnut Cove, the furthest north of the communities and closest to Asheville. Bob Turner, a successful businessman from Chicago who now lives on property full-time, bought the land and hired a farm manager, hoping to kindle interest in Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) and give other Cliffs members a connection to a vanishing lifestyle—as well as healthy food such as produce, eggs, and, starting this year, beef. Purchasing a share in the farm entitles members to a box PREMIER PROPERTIES GUIDE
of vegetables and other fresh products every week, along with flowers, recipes, and information on everything from cooking to canning. The farm also runs an education center that offers classes and special dinners, like one held a few months ago featuring dishes prepared as they were 100 years ago (the chef followed his great-grandmother’s recipes). A number of real estate lots overlook the farm, with Turner noting that a couple from California bought nearby because they were looking for the combination of great golf for him and working the farm for her. Some members do help out, but more common is bringing the kids and grandchildren to see the cows and pet the miniature donkeys that act as the herd’s security detail. Bounty from Creekside and other local farms has become a staple at the more than a dozen dining venues at The Cliffs, which are overseen by award-winning chefs and expert sommeliers. Food also has become a significant part of the many wellness initiatives available at all seven clubs, which offer everything from nutrition seminars to menus annotated with suggestions for smarter eating. To meet their members’ interest in healthy living, each club maintains its own Wellness Center, outfitted with the latest equipment for every kind of workout: cardio, strength LINKS MAGAZINE.COM
Senior Exercise Physiologist A lot of times it starts on the phone. Someone calls and says he was playing golf and his back spasmed. Or new homeowners call and say they want to use the wellness center and ask how to get started. When they come in, I ask about their goals, how I can best guide and serve them. Often times clients don’t know what they need but just that something hurts or they’ve lost 20 yards oﬀ their drives. This prepares me to proceed with an assessment. I need medical detail followed by an orthopedic history, any injuries, surgeries, when they were and how are they doing now. Then I assess their movement, how the body moves in threedimensional space. I call this a Spherical Model of Movement, and it allows me to assess their strength and mobility simultaneously. Think of a bubble surrounding your body: You should have the mobility and strength to reach any point within that bubble moving forward and back, side to side, and rotationally. Lack of controlled, symmetrical motion leads to degeneration and injury. From this I make an individualized plan, starting them slowly and letting me integrate more as I see how the body responds. The execution of the plan takes place at the Wellness Center at the member’s home club using medicine balls, Sandbells, cable systems, and other equipment that facilitates authentic human movement. Trainers at the club know what the client is working on and can assist if needed. Besides one-on-one training programs, all the clubs also oﬀer group classes such as Golf Fit, Yoga, High Intensity Interval Training, and more.
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The Cliffs boasts miles of trails on its own property and through the surrounding countryside.
training, movement, specialized sport conditioning, circuit training, as well as classes in spinning, yoga, Pilates, and more. The clubs also have pools (indoor, outdoor, lap, zero-entry); tennis, pickleball, and sport courts; and highly credentialed instructors available for group and one-on-one training. Of course, when it comes to sport The Cliffs is best known for golf—and showcasing another kind of expert, the golf course architect. The seven layouts were designed by some of the greats, including Jack Nicklaus (Walnut Cove and Keowee Falls), Tom Fazio (Keowee Vineyards and Keowee Springs), Gary Player (Mountain Park), Tom Jackson (Glassy), and Ben Wright (Valley). Located from valley floor to more than 3,300 feet high atop Glassy Mountain, this PREMIER PROPERTIES GUIDE
septet offers a wonderful set of golf diversions—literally one for every day of the week. Even The Cliffs’s real estate brokers are uniquely skilled, which they have to be with seven different communities, each with its own personality, geography, and amenities. For example, one broker told me that if a couple comes to him interested in Walnut Cove, he won’t bring them on property until he’s shown them Asheville since the city’s proximity is integral to that club’s atmosphere. With all there is to do at The Cliffs, living there can make you breathless—and it isn’t just the crisp mountain air. As one member, who divides his time between Mountain Park and the Big Apple, told me, “When we want to relax, we go back to New York City.” LINKS MAGAZINE.COM
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EASTERN UNITED STATES
FROM ALABAMA TO VERMONT, A RICH VARIETY OF COMFORTS, COURSES, AND COMMUNITIES
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THE CLIFFS Upstate S.C./Western N.C. It’s safe to say there is no golf community—or any kind of luxury-lifestyle community for that matter—elsewhere in the world quite like The Cliffs. Because it isn’t just one property but seven, spread over 60 miles of beautiful lake-and-mountain country in western North and South Carolina. Each property at The Cliffs is unique, featuring its own golf course, clubhouse and dining facilities, wellness center, and other amenities. And as a member of any one community you may become a member of all seven, which means access to an almost limitless choice of sporting and social options, day and night, and all within just a few minutes’ drive. In assembling so vast an array of opportunities, The Cliffs has relied on an unparalleled group of experts. The golf courses were designed by some of the greats, including Jack Nicklaus and Tom Fazio, who each did two, as well as Gary Player, Tom Jackson, and Ben Wright. Leading the outdoor adventure
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programs are cyclist George Hincapie, who rode in 17 Tour de France races, and professional wakeboarder Abby Delgoffe, as well as other expert instructors. Many of the chefs are award winners, too. There’s also great variety in the type of living you choose. Three of the properties are on 26-mile-long Lake Keowee, a prime locale for boating, fishing, and all manner of watersports. Other communities are close to Greenville, S.C., and Asheville, N.C., thriving small cities rich in dining, shopping, and culture. And the Blue Ridge Mountains are all around, providing trails for hiking and biking as well as incomparable beauty year round. A similarly wide range of options exists in real estate at The Cliffs, from buying a finished residence to finding the perfect lot and building a custom home; waterside to mountainside to everything in between; and at a choice of price points. For more on The Cliffs, turn to page 30.
The Cliffs 3851 Highway 11 Travelers Rest, S.C. 29690 (864) 508-7465 cliffsliving.com/links
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The Cliffs lands the cover story of the 2019 Premier Properties Guide by LINKS Magazine.